For all those who missed the boat on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Manic Monday swooped in as the last big shopping date for online users. In this post we will be discussing the rise in key calendar dates around the festive season, looking both from a consumer’s perspective and the retailers. We will also hear expertise from leading marketing and advertising agency representatives, to find out first hand what impact these dates are having on the industry.
Manic Monday saw predications of £733 million being spent by consumers. This is a 10% increase on last year’s £633 million. This comes from data firm Experian and online retailing trade association IMRG.
Needless to say, no doubt what figures will really show will surpass these predications, the same way Black Friday and Cyber Monday did. Consumers spent a record breaking £3.3 billion over the four days, between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Friday alone saw a stunning £1.1 billion spent online, leaving high streets deserted.
Manic Monday looked to be the next big money maker but not for the same reasons. Manic Monday phenomenon isn’t in association with any major discounts but has become the new ‘later date’ to do Christmas shopping. This comes from the rise of confidence in retailers delivering products in time before Christmas. Having said this, due to the date’s attraction many websites were said to be offering free delivery.
Paul Hackett, the Managing Partner at Proximity London, gives us his thoughts from an agency perspective. The few points of difference that perhaps stand-out, compared to the same time last year are:
- Advertisers are clearly very conscious that they ought to be seen to do something for Black Friday, Cyber Monday.
- Some brands elected to use it as an opportunity to announce an extended pre-Christmas sale period; effectively making BFCM the launch date – in the hope this would boost footfall.
- Nonetheless, digital commerce remained the overall winner, with the British Retail Consortium reporting that high street retail spending on a like-for-like basis, (which strips out changes in floor space and is preferred by some equity analysts), fell 0.4% y-o-y in November, following a 0.2% fall in October – reiterating the trend that, as far as traditional UK retail is concerned, BFCM has become something of a damp squib.
- So for bricks and mortar retailers with a franchise to support, the challenge for next year is how to design a digital experience that positively engages, supports in-store sales.
Manic Monday is considered to be one of the last dates consumers will leave to do their Christmas shopping, in order to know it will come in time. Notably though, shoppers will still take the risk of enduring a delivery error, breaking away from traditional Christmas shopping habits when previously, the days before Christmas, shoppers would flood the high street getting their last minute purchases.
The day as a whole is expected to have generated an impressive £677 million, though still trumped by Black Friday. Having said this the day wasn’t completely discount clear, riding off the back of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, there were still a number of sites offering considerable discounts on certain items.
Simon Parker, the Managing Director for White Label, notes,
“In among the cynicism of retailers inventing A New Thing to artificially drive sales, lies the human need to be part of communal experiences. It wasn’t authentic, but it is now. BF & CM won’t stay the same but are here to stay for quite a while to come.”
It has also been reported that Manic Monday puts immense strain on websites with the influx of shoppers using this as their last available day to do their Christmas shopping. Some stores offer a ‘click and collect’ service where shoppers have the option to pick up their purchases from a designated point, which eradicates the risk of late delivery.
What these major shopping dates all demonstrate is the significant change in Christmas shopping patterns. This isn’t to say the high streets have become ghost towns, and no longer will the average consumer step foot out of their house to purchase a gift. However, what statistic’s are showing us is that with the rise in the number of people owning smart gadgets, not just their computers and laptops, but also having the ability to click ‘buy’ from a mobile phone or tablet, means users aren’t confined to their homes to online shop. Shoppers can shop from anywhere and everywhere, they don’t need to visit a store in person to buy from it.
For all those who missed out on bagging a bargain, fear not! The last major shopping dates are Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day, but these are all post Christmas!